And it came to pass in those days that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria. And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethelehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. Luke 2:1-5
It’s the little things that can drive us crazy, make us feel “off course”.
The common feels like an interruption to our well crafted plans.
But these verses have always comforted me in the little and common. In fact, the smaller, simpler, and more commonplace the detail, the more I prefer to dig because there’s almost always a lesson, a thought, a little more to be had.
Joseph has to take Mary to a Bethlehem where the people of their lineage would go to register to be taxed. It’s a detour from just staying home, and having a divinely appointed baby who would save the world. They have to register for taxes.
However, this brings the story right where it needs to be – where many prophets and verses foretold that the Messiah would come from Bethlehem.
It wasn’t optional legally, and it wasn’t optional to the fulfillment of the story – the birth had to take place in Bethlehem. The story is complete BECAUSE of this sideline, not in spite of it.
For us, the offering is to consider what feels most like a sidelined story?
What is the “have to” (like taxes in April) that feels like it takes us away from the “want to” (like spending all we want on gifts)?
Do we wonder – how does this fit? Lord, do you want this for me? If so, help me to go along with it, and accept, and breathe and know it’s going to be okay instead of hyperventilating, and freaking out.
Let’s all trust that the sideline is getting each of us where we are most called to be – not in spite of it.
Yes, it requires that we consider we are not in control.
Yes, it requires we still show up.
No, we don’t have a say.
But yes, we do get to watch a miracle – every time.
In Great Joy, Vikki
Advent Devotions for Moms